A while ago, I took Zoe to a pizza-making class at our local farmers’ market. Surrounded by other kids piling on different toppings, Zoe made a very simple pizza, using just pineapple and ham. I asked her whether she wanted to add peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms, or anything else, but she was very clear that she only wanted to add the two ingredients. Of course, it’s a much-loved combination with kids but I was surprised that she didn’t go for the peppers or mushrooms as well. As she munched her way through it – very happily – it led me to think about the beauty of using just a few ingredients in dishes. At home, I often cook very simple meals – baking fish, for example, in olive oil, or grilling meat, and serving it with steamed veggies and salad. If you use good quality (preferably organic) ingredients, you can enjoy every mouthful of pure, unadulterated food.
So it makes sense that you can apply the same idea to pizza. This weekend I tried out Zoe’s combo and it was great. Peter, especially, loved it. Long live the good, simple classics!
* gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, seed-free, citrus-free
- 6 tbsp passata
- 2 tbsp tomato purée
- 220g/7¾oz tinned pineapple, drained and cut into chunks
- 50g/1¾oz Parma ham, thinly sliced
- 30–60g/1–2¼oz/⅓–⅔ cup soya cheese, shaved
- Pizza Dough:
- 85g/3oz/scant ½ cup brown rice flour, plus extra for rolling the dough
- 85g/3oz/¾ cup gram flour
- 30g/1¼oz/¼ cup maize flour
- scant ½ tsp xanthan gum
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp dried active yeast
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- To make the pizza dough, sift the flours, xanthan gum and salt into a large mixing bowl. Add the yeast and, using a metal whisk, mix thoroughly. Add the oil and mix in. Pour in 100ml/3½fl oz/scant ½ cup warm water and, using either a wooden spoon or your hands, mix to form a soft dough. Alternatively, sift the flours, xanthan gum and salt into a food processor. Add the yeast and blend to mix together. Add the oil and blend well. Add 100ml/3½fl oz/scant ½ cup warm water, a little at a time, and continue blending to form a soft dough. Put the dough in a clean bowl, cover with cling film and leave to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/gas 7 and line a baking sheet with baking parchment. Turn the dough out again onto a lightly floured surface and knead a little, then shape it into a ball. Flatten the dough slightly, roll it out into a large circle about 5mm/¼in thick and neaten the edge, using a sharp knife, if you like. Transfer the dough to the baking sheet.
- Put the passata and tomato purée in a bowl and mix well, then spread it over the pizza base and sprinkle with the pineapple and ham. Bake for 12 minutes until the base is starting to turn brown and the tomato sauce is bubbling. Remove the pizza from the oven and scatter the cheese over the top, then return to the oven for 3–4 minutes until the cheese has started to melt. Serve immediately.
I must admit it is only recently that I have thought the same. Why confuse your palate with too many flavours and ingredients. I have also discovered that I can enjoy pizza completely cheese free, preferring the crunch of crispy dough, the taste of rich tomato and a sprinkling of well combined toppings. Ham and pineapple or pepperoni and red onion!
Hi Emma, Many thanks for this. I really like pizza without (d-f) cheese, too. It’s lovely when you get a crunchy crust and, as you say, with great toppings. Yum! Gx
Totally agree – sometimes the fewer ingredients the better. Sounds great. Lovely photo too.
Many thanks Nicola! And hope all’s good with you, Sophia and Zac Gx
Made this last night and was soooooo pleased with the results, have tried a few other gf pizza recipes and this was by far the best, thank you! Pizza is my favourite food and finding a gf substitute was paramount to my future happiness!!
Hi Evie, I’m so sorry I’ve been so slow to reply to you – I’ve been writing a new book and living and breathing new recipes! I’m so pleased to hear that you like the pizza. It always felt like a really important recipe to crack because it feels like such a treat to be able to eat it! Do try the Chargrilled Pepper pizza, too – and there are also a couple of pizza recipes in my books… Thanks so much for letting me know – and it’s great to hear from you.